Years before Beavis and Butt-head headbanged "Thunder Kiss '65" and "More Human than Human" into the eternal rock video canon, there was primordial WHITE ZOMBIE — a quintessential, diabolically loud by-product of Manhattan's underground rock scene, born of art-school rendezvous and squalid apartment circumstance. On June 3, 2016, Numero resurrects WHITE ZOMBIE's eternally out-of-print early EPs and LPs as "It Came From N.Y.C." This set is the most exhaustive attempt so far to document the band's wondrously ugly birth. Get reintroduced to WHITE ZOMBIE as New York noise-rock, a grotesque creation that clawed and threatened its way to crossover metal glory.
Spread across five LPs or three compact discs, all 39 tracks have been remastered by WHITE ZOMBIE guitarist J. Yuenger and packaged alongside the original lurid artwork. The accompanying 108-page book painstakingly documents WHITE ZOMBIE's punishing progression through scores of unpublished photos, period discography, a T-shirtography, and tales from the terrifying early years that stitch together the sordid story of a band whose true power eclipsed its mainstream heyday.
"It Came From N.Y.C." package details:
* 5LPs or 3 CDs
* 108-page hardcover book
* 20,000 word essay by Grayson Currin
* Flyer gallery
* Complete shirtography, 1985-1990
* 50 previously unpublished photographs
* Available on black, white*, and Toxic Waste Green* vinyl
*only available via Numero Group website
"It Came From N.Y.C." track listing:
"God's On Voodoo Moon" 7" - 1985
01. Gentleman Junkie
02. King Of Souls
03. Tales From The Scare Crow Man
04. Cat's Eye Resurrection
05. Black Friday*
06. Dead or Alive*
"Pig Heaven" 7" - 1986
01. Pig Heaven
02. Slaughter The Grey
03. Scarecrow #2*
04. Red River Flow*
05. Rain Insane*
06. Paradise Fireball*
"Psycho-Head Blowout" 12" EP - 1987
02. Fast Jungle
03. Gun Crazy
07. True Crime
"Soul-Crusher" 12" LP - 1987
02. Shack Of Hate
03. Drowning The Colossus
04. Crow III
05. Die Zombie Die
07. Truck On Fire
08. Future Shock
09. Scum Kill
10. Diamond Ass
"Make Them Die Slowly" 12" LP - 1989
02. Disaster Blaster
05. Acid Flesh
06. Power Hungry
"God Of Thunder" 12" EP - 1989
01. God Of Thunder
02. Love Razor
03. Disaster Blaster-2
Pre-order here via Numero Group.
Rob Zombie told England's RockAAA in a 2011 interview that WHITE ZOMBIE will never reunite. Zombie explained, "I don't see the point. I think as with most things people have a memory of something like, 'I saw them when I was 14 years old and it was the greatest thing ever,' but if they saw us now they'd probably go, 'I wish I hadn't seen that reunion, it was awful.' The singer added, "It is better to leave it alone and I haven't talked to anyone from the band except [drummer] John Tempesta in about 15 years."
WHITE ZOMBIE broke up in 1997 and Rob Zombie went on to launch a successful solo career in 1998. He told The Pulse Of Radio that nowadays a lot of his audience isn't even familiar with the old WHITE ZOMBIE songs. "The crowds are really, really young and I've been noticing that with the set list too, because, you know, as the time has gone on, we've really worked the WHITE ZOMBIE material more out of the set, because we've been finding that it's not working like it used to," he said. "It seems like that those songs just seem now old to people and it's very strange."
The history of WHITE ZOMBIE came up when Rob Zombie was asked to comment on the publication of "I'm In The Band", a memoir from former WHITE ZOMBIE bassist Sean Yseult, who is also Rob's former girlfriend.
In the book, Yseult claimed that the departure of drummer Ivan DePrume led to the eventual disintegration of the group.
Zombie said, "I have not seen it [the book] so I can't comment. I can barely remember those days, so I'm glad somebody can."
He added, "Everybody likes to make up stories which aren't true. I don't think that's fair. Ivan left the band, John Tempesta came in and the band sounded better than ever, we kept playing and made bigger records and did more tours so I don't see how that had anything to do with it."
In a 2015 Artisan News interview, Sean confirmed that Rob "hasn't spoken to any of [the other former members of WHITE ZOMBIE] since the band broke up."
Yuenger admitted to Crawdaddy! back in 2010 that he still harbored some resentment over WHITE ZOMBIE's demise. He said: "I would have liked to make another record, but it wasn't in the cards. On Rob's solo albums, you can see what he wanted to do, where he wanted to go. I always wanted to be in a rock 'n' roll band, where the primary instruments are guitar, bass, and drums, you know? We were living in New York City for all those years, hearing all the rap and techno coming out — my favorite bands back then were SLAYER and PUBLIC ENEMY. I was really all about sampling, and we put out 'La Sexorcisto' with all those samples, and it blew people away. We were like, the first rock band to do that. And it was great, I loved it. But as time went on, the sampling and techno stuff started to dominate everything, and I really hated it. Now you can hear how little humanity is in Rob's stuff."
WHITE ZOMBIE's 4-CD/1-DVD box set "Let Sleeping Corpses Lie" was released in November 2008 via Geffen/UMe. The CDs brought together for the first time all 64 original studio recordings released by the band led by Rob Zombie during its 1985-1996 career. The DVD offered nine music videos, 10 live performances, and some hidden gems.
Yuenger told Crawdaddy! about "Let Sleeping Corpses Lie": "They sent me and Sean mockups, like, two days before the release date. There was such little thought put into it. None of the photos were credited. There were no liner notes, which are essential for something like that. I mean, the band had such an interesting story, how could you not have liner notes? I hear about it all the time from fans. They're happy that the super rare early records are on there, that's cool for them to hear, but the packaging sucks. Sean's got all kinds cool shit — photos and flyers and stuff that they could have put in there."